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Tips on how to have a safe and happy Thanksgiving holiday.

By John Hipskind on November 25, 2015

Thanksgiving is a wonderful start to the holiday season in the St. Louis metropolitan area.  It is a time to spend with family and friends.  It is also a time to enjoy some of the great local treasures our area has to offer like Lady of the Snow, the Central West End Window Walk, the St. Louis Zoo, and many more fantastic and fun spots.

It is also a time to be safety conscious.  More home property damage and vehicular accidents happen around Thanksgiving Day than any other time of the year.  As a result, it is important to be mindful and exercise the necessary precautions to assure you have safe, happy, and healthy Thanksgiving.  Here are just a few tips to help make sure you enjoy a happy and safe Holiday.

Avoid Frying Your Turkey.  Grease fires burn, and they are not easy to put out.  Not to mention the fact that you and your brother have never actually done this before.  Your ten minute Google search on “how to safely fry a turkey” probably isn’t enough to make you an expert and certainly will not be enough to avoid liability if someone gets injured in the process.

Remember that last time you cooked fries in grease?  The ice or water from the fires pops as they go into the hot grease.  Now, instead of fries and two cups of grease, consider thirty gallons of grease and a twenty to thirty pound wet turkey…a lot could go wrong.  Be safe.  If you do not know how to use the fryer properly, cook the turkey in the oven.  Your family and friends will still have a great time.  Let’s be honest, they are there for the conversation (ideally) not your cooking prowess.

Regardless of how you cook your turkey, always have baking soda and a fire extinguisher available and close nearby to cure any accidents that do occur.  And if an accident does occur, don’t hesitate in contacting the real experts to handle it.

Be the Host with the Safest Home.  If you have your family and friends over for Thanksgiving Day, you will likely spend hours upon hours shopping, cleaning, decorating, and, finally, cooking.  But don’t stop there.  The kindness you show by sharing your home may not be rewarded if you don’t injure proof your house.  Remember, you could be having people over from ages ranging from 1 to 90, some may have never been in your home or met your pets, this means you have some work to do.  Make sure that there are no “slick” spots in your home.  Check your sidewalk for any obstructions.  You also probably need to make sure your pets are out of the way.  Remember, not all of your guests know your animals and some of the children may not understand how to properly treat and play with an animal.  The last thing you want on your relaxing holiday is for your sister’s son Devon to be injured by your beloved pet.

Driving?  Be Safe, Be Careful, Be Cautious, Do Not Text and Drive.  The home isn’t the only place where accidents can occur.  More vehicle accidents occur on Thanksgiving Day than nearly any other day of the year.  It is important to exercise safe driving practices in order to assure that you, your family, and your friends arrive to your destination safer and sound:

  • Check your vehicle fluid levels, tail lights, tire tread levels, tire air levels, battery and fill up with gas before leaving;
  • Have a plan. Bring along an emergency kit with supplies in case of an accident or breakdown.  Remember, more accidents happen on Thanksgiving than nearly any other day of the year, so it may take some time for emergency crews to reach you, so it is best to be prepared.
  • If you do have an accident, do your best to get to all the way off the road or at least on the shoulder, if possible.  Turn on your hazards and make sure to turn on your hazards and set up safety triangles to warn other drivers’ of your vehicle.
  • Don’t drive drunk or distracted.  If while celebrating the holidays you have a couple drinks, stay over or bring a designated driver, safety for you and your loved ones is the most important thing.  Also, remember, even if you are running late, do not text and drive.  Drivers who text while driving are four times more likely to be in a car accident.
  • Avoid late night driving.
  • Slow down or wait for any inclement weather to pass.
  • Make sure you map out your destination before beginning your journey, do not mess with your phone or GPS while driving.

Remember, be safe and enjoy a happy holiday season.

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